Covert Drone War
The use of Predator and Reaper drones (unmanned flying vehicles that are often armed with video-guided missiles) by the US military and CIA is a largely untold story of the "Global War on Terror / Global Contingency Operation" - yet has caused thousands of deaths in Pakistan and Afghanistan, many of whom are women and children.
A few points on the U.S. drone war which will not surprise you, but should be in your arsenal of arguments for people who think drones are an acceptable form of mass murder:
As the Obama government attempts to justify its drone program, Staff Sergeant Shane R. Owens, a drone sensor operator suffering from PTSD from having been involved with drone killing, assigned to the 11th Reconnaissance Squadron at Creech AFB, has been confined by the Air Force without charges since March 5 at nearby Nellis AFB in Nevada.
U.S. airstrikes and drone attacks against rebels in Yemen came to the world's attention in 2009, though CIA drone strikes first started in 2001. None of the U.S.'s “interventions” have provided any support to the masses of people who joined the Arab spring protests in 2011 against the ruling government.
World Can't Wait endorses actions to Shut Down Creech Air Force Base, the primary home of killer drones. We received this from activists:
Possibly 200-300 activists from 16+ states will converge at Creech AFB in early march, to unite against this horrendous and unconscionable practice: Executing people remotely from the desert of Nevada, without providing any evidence of guilt. This has got to stop! Won't you join us to SHUT DOWN CREECH? (Caravan leaving Bay Area Feb. 28)
On Dec. 10, 2014, International Human Rights Day, Kathy Kelly and Georgia Walker were found guilty of trespass by a US magistrate for their attempt to serve an indictment for war crimes on the commander of Whiteman Air Force Base, which is a drone base. In her statement to the court, Kathy recounted the story of an Afghan mother whose son was killed by a drone and the anguish these weapons cause.
For several years, organized by the Upstate Coalition to Ground the Drones and End the Wars, hundreds of people have taken part in non violence civil resistance outside Hancock Air Force Base, near Syracuse, NY. Carrying photos of people killed by U.S. drones in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen, singing, praying, reading victims' names, they have repeatedly attempted to deliver a message to the drone operators to stop; to the base commander to stop; and to the public to refuse to support killing in our names.
Since 2009, when Obama began the targeted killing rampage in Pakistan & Yemen, killing uncounted thousands, World Can't Wait has demanded an end to it. Others have demanded "transparency" in knowing how the targeting decisions were made.
Last month, they got their wish, to a point. Because The New York Times and the ACLU filed a lawsuit to get it, parts of a redacted Office of Legal Counsel memo on targeted killing were released.
1st Hancock Air Base Order of Protection Defendant Facing 1 Year Sentencing July 10th
Syracuse, NY. Drone activist, Mary Anne Grady Flores, is facing 1 year in jail for violating an order of protection. She will be sentenced at 6pm, Thursday, July 10, 2014, by Judge Gideon of De Witt Town Court (5400 Butternut Dr., East Syracuse, New York). The grandmother of 3 had been issued a temporary order of protection for participating in a nonviolent civil resistance action in 2012 at Hancock Air Base. Col. Earl A. Evans, the base’s mission support group commander, was granted the order from local judges, to shut down protests at the base.
Speaking Truth From the Robotic Heavens
Enemies, innocent victims, and soldiers have always made up the three faces of war. With war growing more distant, with drones capable of performing on the battlefield while their “pilots” remain thousands of miles away, two of those faces have, however, faded into the background in recent years.